Deaf & Hard of Hearing Students


We recognize that deafness and hearing loss affects an individual differently in different environments.  For example, one may feel confident they understand everything in a smaller classroom, but not in a large lecture hall with poor acoustics.   

We also recognize that an individual may feel that they strongly identify with having a disability related to deafness or hearing loss, while another might not even want others to know.  We meet students where they are and provide accommodations accordingly.  Your accommodations will be specifically tailored to you.   

Many DHOH individuals find themselves in situations day in and day out where they’re either left out of what’s being said or they have to ask that the content be made accessible to them.  It’s exhausting to constantly be left out like this or have accessibility treated as an afterthought.  If you are DHOH and find yourself in this situation, please reach out to the DAC and we will help advocate for accessibility and inclusion.  

Examples of Communication Access Accommodations

The DAC works with HandDancer Interpreter Services to provide American Sign Language interpretation. ASL services can be requested for classes, meetings, campus events, etc.  

One or two interpreters may be assigned to each class/meeting.  The interpreters will take turns standing near the front of the room or near the speaker to interpret what is being said.  Service providers will not participate in any way and follow strict codes of professional conduct to keep all information confidential. 

Live captioning services can be requested for classes, meetings, events, and other campus-affiliated activities.  Depending on the student’s needs and the environment, the DAC may hire TypeWell transcriptionists, who produce meaning-for-meaning transcripts, or CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation), which produces a verbatim or word-for-word transcript. In either case, the transcriptionist will attend the class or event virtually or in person to allow students to visually access auditory information. 

Generally, 1-2 service providers will be assigned to each class/ event and will do their best to set up on the side of the classroom to avoid interfering.  The service providers will type what is being said into their abbreviation software which the student can access real-time through a unique URL created specifically for them.  Service providers will not participate in any way and follow strict codes of professional conduct to keep all information confidential.  

The student will be sent the transcript within 24 hours of each assignment.   

Check out our demonstration video for more information.  

What are meaning-for-meaning services?

TypeWell is not a verbatim transcription service.  Through a process known as "chunking," transcribers condense utterances and non-verbal cues into a concise and readable format.  The "fluff" is removed, such as false starts, while the "meat," or the intended meaning of the speaker's phrasing, is relayed.  Transcribers capture the classroom environment, including nonverbal communication, such as jokes, sarcasm, and environmental sounds, as well as STEM formulas that are written on the board, while also clarifying ambiguous references, and more.  


Using a team of in-house transcriptionists and outsourced services, DAC provides closed captioning and audio description services of media content. Closed captions provide a much higher level of accuracy than automated captions and fully convey the meaning presented. When a student receives and utilizes closed captioning accommodations, a notification is sent to the instructor requesting that all content be captioned or sent to the DAC so that it can be captioned in advance. 

The DAC lends FM systems to DAC students who request them. FM systems use radio waves to pass sound from a microphone worn by the speaker to a receiver, which the student can listen through. FM systems helps to reduce background noise, providing clearer audio, which may make it easier for the student to hear.